Montenegro: UN expert calls for adequate social protection for older persons
30 April 2018
Number of older persons in Montenegro has tripled in last 50 years and it is expected that by 2050 more than 1 in 5 of the population will be aged 60 or over.
GENEVA / PODGORICA (30 April 2018)
An independent expert appointed by the United Nations visiting Montenegro has welcomed the significant efforts of the Government, but said “older persons in Montenegro need adequate social protection”.
The number of older persons in Montenegro has tripled over the last 50 years and it is expected that by 2050 more than one in five of the population will be aged 60 or over.
“With a stagnating population, the share of older persons will increase and persist. Ensuring the full respect of the rights of older persons in the social protection system has become one of the most pressing issues”, Rosa Kornfeld-Matte, the Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons, said.
Kornfeld-Matte welcomed the recently finalized strategy for the development of a new social protection system for the elderly. “The complexity of ageing requires a comprehensive approach to ensuring the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons,” the expert said.
“Montenegro has improved its legislative framework related to social protection, but it is necessary to continue the reform to ensure integrated social and health care services for older persons,” she added.
“I am concerned at the considerable percentage of older persons who still live in absolute poverty. Older persons, especially women, fall within one of the most disadvantaged groups in Montenegro; when they belong to minorities they face multiple challenges. I call on the Government to ensure that protection reaches this most vulnerable of groups,” she noted.
“I am also concerned at the high number of older persons, notably those with disabilities, who are deprived of their full legal capacity. I urge the Government to put in place a system of supported decision-making that fully respects the autonomy, integrity, dignity, will and preferences of the individual,” the expert stressed.
During her visit, Ms Kornfeld-Matte met with various representatives of Government authorities, academia and civil society as well as others working on the rights of older persons and older persons themselves.
The expert will present a comprehensive report of her findings and recommendations to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva in September 2018.
UN entities involved in this initiative
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights